• Kofi Amoabin

Protecting the Image of the Presidency

Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang

Responsible employees protect the image of their employer.

This responsibility is huge for high level government employees, because their decisions affect the image of political leaders. In most countries, the laws allow the seat of government, in our case the Office of the President, to promote it’s good image.

The reasoning is beyond politics.

In our presidential system of government, the president is both the Chief Executive and Chief of State, and he surrounds everything in Ghana.

Therefore, Ghanaians suffer if the image of the president is tarnished.

The president negotiates for all and binds all Ghanaians, so, after we choose a president, the responsibility falls on all well-meaning Ghanaians, regardless of political affiliation, to support and to protect the president.

Ghanaians are blessed to have President Akufo-Addo, and the question and answer section when President Akufo-Addo spoke at Harvard Kennedy School of Government makes this blessing evident.

The President is the face of the country overseas and is the voice of the people at all international gatherings, including the United Nations, Africa Union, and Economic Community of West African States meetings.

It is wrong for a civil servant to presume that the government deals in bad faith and that the work record of a public servant embarrasses that government. How?

Public servants are implored not to degrade the image of the President of Ghana, in the name of service to the President or to the people, via work done within the confines of civil service.

Most Ghanaians were probably shocked to read that the Auditor General thinks his work embarrasses the president.

Any high position, in business or in government, is based on relationships and teamwork. The AG cannot hate his superiors and stay on the job.

Furthermore, if the AG indeed wanted to address challenges our nation face, the AG knows he cannot do this as a lone ranger. Ghana has other major institutions like the BNI, CHRAG, and others for civil servants to seek consensus on matters sensitive to the state.

Government workers are making an exigent demand on the Head of Civil Service Department that high level public servants undergo periodic training in teamwork.

In Ghana, poor teamwork is probably one of the reasons some state enterprises underperform.

The concept of teamwork started in pre-WWII Japan and American institutions did not embrace and teach teamwork until the post WWII era.

Teams offer stakeholders better performance and increased productivity.

FONAA Institute, a public charity built on the vision of President of President Akufo-Addo, has leadership courses in business and government.

The responsibility for building better teams, so Ghana progresses beyond aid, falls on all state actors.

The articles in the constitution alone would not be enough justification for the AG to dismiss being asked to proceed on leave. The seeming locus that the AG has come to the end of the road as far as playing on a team with current state actors supersedes all reasons.

Public servants have the responsibility to improve the image of government, regardless the personal meaning of actions and inactions observed.

The author holds an MA degree in political communication from DePaul University and is available as a political/campaign consultant.